Zhao Zhicheng was the lord of Dusk City, but Wanfeng still wielded power over Dusk Province.
In the years she’d been with Wayfarer, not only had her cultivation improved by leaps and bounds, but she herself had become incredibly resilient as well. Having grown out of her youthful naivete, she was now an incredible leader. Apart from Qing Yu and his Envoys of Samsara, the one person Lu Yun trusted the most was Wanfeng.
Upon receiving her orders, Wanfeng sprang into action. The Skandha Range and factions loyal to the Star Demon Sect exerted their influence, spreading rumors like wildfire against the Sword Divine, Dongfang Hao!
It was common knowledge that Dongfang Hao had died a few years ago while attempting to restore the void realm. However, he’d then suddenly come back to life as Sword Divine, a development that instilled fear in the Dongfang Clan since the details were now being widely disseminated.
The Dongfang Clan ranked among the peak clans as well, possessing their own crippled origin dao immortal that held down the fort. But in Primus Major, where the heavenly court and Lin Clan dominated over all others, the Dongfangs would never be allowed to rise to power.
And yet the clan had seen great, inexplicable surges in power recently. Several of their talented cultivators had ascended to immortality one after another. While their phenomena of ascension didn’t span an entire major, they were second only to those of the greatest geniuses.
At this point in time, their future seemed even brighter than that of both the Lin Clan and Primus court. Many had been speculating how it’d all happened, but recent happenings and the clan’s sudden rise were in line with the rumors.
Some time before, many factions in the world of immortals had found soul seeds planted in their geniuses and lost their guardian spirits in a mass revolt. All signs pointed to the suddenly-emerging Sword Divine.
The Dongfang Clan wrung their hands with despair, as many powerful immortals were on their way to Primus Major to demand an explanation. The clan had their fair share of enemies, so even though Dongfang Hao was dead, everyone was quite willing to believe that a dead man was the Sword Divine everyone knew.
Celebrations reigned jubilant as all of Exalted Major delighted in Zhao Wushuang successfully overcoming his tribulation. However, no one, including the prince himself, had a clue how he’d managed it.
After a long discussion, the Exalted celestial emperor and Zhao Wushuang concluded that the previous celestial emperor must have made a great many preparations, which ultimately helped him overcome his tribulation by a hair.
The celestial emperor threw open the court’s vaults and hosted a great banquet, showering an astronomical sum of crystals on various ingredients, materials, and rare pills for the immortals in Exalted Major.
A joyous atmosphere permeated the major.
Within a cavern in the rear mountain of the Exalted Immortal Sect were gathered the Exalted celestial emperor, Zhao Wushuang, Lu Yun, Qi Hai, Ge Yanxia, and Donglin Taihuang. In addition, the reclusive heavyweights of the major were in attendance as well, their grave expressions suggested that something momentous was about to happen.
Ge Yanxia played with a treasure with visible delight. This was the reward the celestial emperor had promised her.
“Can you make your second announcement now, Your Majesty?” Lu Yun had a small smile on his face and also toyed with a treasure in his hands—the Exalted Chart!
Not the one in the celestial emperor’s possession, but the almost shattered one that’d protected Zhao Wushuang. That was the reward Lu Yun had asked for.
Although the treasure teetered on the verge of destruction, it was still incredibly valuable to him. He’d recognized its main material as the ingredient Qing Yu had said could be refined into a Yang Ten Orientations Stone.
That was why he’d used Thunder Palmstrike to absorb the lightning during Zhao Wushuang’s tribulation—all for the sake of protecting the treasure.
Many of those present had jumped up and almost killed Lu Yun on the spot when he dared request the Exalted Chart as his compensation. Ultimately, Zhao Wushuang relinquished the damaged portion and emphasized that the Exalted Chart was the major’s indispensable treasure. If Lu Yun wanted it, he could only have the damaged half.
The immortals only calmed down when Lu Yun happily accepted the offer. At the same time, they found his actions shameful. He’d been the first to ‘flee’ when the Diabolical Tribulation of World Refinement descended. How shameless of him to ask for the Exalted Chart when he hadn’t done anything to deserve it!
Him asking about the second matter irritated them even further.
“Your Majesty!” a man with blue hair and eyes stood up and interjected when the celestial emperor was about to respond. “Lu Yun, Governor of Dusk Province in Nephrite Major, is highly intelligent and has great potential, but he is merely a cultivator, at the end of the day. This subject believes he has no place getting involved in this matter, considering his cultivation and status. You should reconsider this.”
He looked to be in his twenties, but his eyes bore witness to the passage of many years. He was obviously an ancient heavyweight who’d been around for tens of thousands of years. Although he called himself a subject, his tone was hardly apropos of one.
It hadn’t been long since the current Exalted celestial emperor had taken the throne and he had yet to earn everyone’s respect, despite having ascended to the origin dao immortal realm.
The speaker with blue hair and eyes was Luo Ying, a peak arcane dao immortal elder of the Luo Clan, one of the top factions in Exalted Major. His clan had inherited the bloodline of the Exalted Divine Tribe, which granted them influence in the major that rivaled even the Exalted Immortal Sect.
“Senior Luo Ying is quite right!” another dao immortal voiced his agreement. “Lu Yun is a craven milksop with the courage of a mouse! Although he persuaded five peak factions to leave when Prince Wushuang’s tribulation struck, he also made his escape at the eleventh hour. I worry that he’ll be the first to run away as well if he becomes part of that mission!”
Lu Yun frowned at Zhao Wushuang and saw her looking back at him. However, there was a trace of confusion in her eyes. She didn’t care about how the two immortals saw Lu Yun. In fact, she was curious and a little suspicious of him.
Has she noticed something? Frowning slightly, Lu Yun fiddled with the Exalted Chart in his hand. Well, he wasn’t worried. Since the Exalted celestial emperor had invited him to this gathering, that meant he had to participate in whatever mission they were talking about.
Even if he couldn’t take part in it, Qing Yu would be invited in his stead!
“Your Majesty!” Luo Ying exclaimed. “The Scroll of Shepherding Immortals is now in Exalted Major and so is Lu Yun… Please make your decision, Your Majesty!”
Killing intent surged as Ge Yanxia and Donglin Taihuang turned to Lu Yun with malicious leers.